Be running up that hill, with no problems…
06/06/2023 (Staff Post - Alan McNiven )
Aging gracefully is a goal – but I doubt I’ll ever achieve it. We know that staying active becomes increasingly important for maintaining physical and mental well-being as we get older and while it's common perhaps to assume that running is a young person's game, I’ve found that hitting the pavement – foot, not face first - can be a great experience.
I’ve read that running comes with a myriad of benefits that can enhance the quality of life, improving your cardiovascular health, bone strength, joint health, mental health and emotional well-being. And it also helps with stress relief releasing endorphins that promote feelings of happiness. It’s even been suggested that running can improve cognitive function as it stimulates blood flow to the brain, making the runner more alert. While I’m sure this is mostly true I have to say that during my early morning runs, with groggy eyes and slow, stumbling gait I am more zombie than scholar. When I get out on a run I may be many things – slow, grumpy, grunting, - but I’m certainly not graceful. Even when running on the smoothest of surfaces, I often find myself prone to stumbling over invisible rocks or non-existent curbs. It's as if I’m on a secret mission to find every possible opportunity to practice my balance based recovery skills.
Last weekend I was in the Scottish Borders town of Galashiels for a great wee holiday with some of my extended family and managed to get a couple of morning runs in. Everywhere in Galashiels, for whatever reason, seems to be at the top of a hill – no matter where you start your run you are at the top of the hill. Which is nice at first until you remember that you need to run back too. Thankfully on my second very early morning run I found an area that was sort of flat around a park and through the local cemetery. And while the cemetery was very peaceful, I made a conscious note to keep the pace going, keep upright and grunt less - just to avoid any potential misunderstandings…
We're always trying to promote wellbeing locally - if you can join us you're welcome to come along next Tuesday:
Maybe see you there - take care!